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Going Green in the Auto Industry

A research team at the University of Toronto is giving a whole new meaning to the term "going green". The team is developing a novel new material for car parts, using two key ingredients: micro-cellulose fibre and lignin carbon fibre. Both of them are renewable resources that can be extracted from wood pulp. The team is combining these two fibres to create a high-strength composite that will be used to manufacture automotive components, reducing environmental impact. The manufacturing process will be "greener", and the components will be lighter, reducing the emissions of the vehicles in which they are used.

To develop the unique design tools and processing technologies needed to produce this new composite material, researchers are working closely with industry partner Ford Motor Canada and the University of Windsor. The five-year project is receiving $4.8 million from Automotive Partnership Canada.